Prohibits the operation of any motor vehicle equipped with a device which affects the operation of traffic-control signals; provides that the possession of such a device shall constitute a traffic infraction, use thereof is a class A misdemeanor, and use which results in personal injury or death shall constitute a class E felony.
Ayes (59): Adams, Addabbo, Alesi, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Espaillat, Farley, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Gallivan, Gianaris, Golden, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Hassell-Thomps, Huntley, Johnson, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Kruger, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Martins, Maziarz, McDonald, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Mara, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Saland, Sampson, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousin, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Nays (1): Duane
Excused (2): Oppenheimer, Smith
Ayes (56): Adams, Addabbo, Alesi, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Espaillat, Farley, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Gallivan, Gianaris, Golden, Griffo, Grisanti, Hassell-Thomps, Huntley, Johnson, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Maziarz, McDonald, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Mara, Oppenheimer, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Saland, Sampson, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousin, Young, Zeldin
Nays (2): Duane, Parker
Excused (3): Hannon, Martins, Valesky
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to prohibiting the use of any device which affects the operation of a traffic-control signal
PURPOSE: To prohibit the operation of any vehicle, except an emergency vehicle, that is equipped with a device which affects the operation of a traffic control signal.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill adds a new section 397-c to the vehicle and traffic law to make it illegal for a person to operate a vehicle which he or she knows is equipped with a device capable of affecting the operation of any traffic-control signal. The bill also provides exceptions where the operator can show by credible evidence that he or she was not aware of the presence of the device or if the person using such a device is engaged in the authorized maintenance or repair of a traffic-control signal. Possession of the device shall constitute a traffic infraction. If the operator is using the device to affect the operation of a traffic control signal, it shall constitute a class A misdemeanor. If the unauthorized use of such a device causes personal injury or death, then it shall constitute a class E felony.
In addition, operators of authorized emergency vehicles and public transportation vehicles are exempt from this section.
EXISTING LAW: None exists.
JUSTIFICATION: There are people willing to pay as much as $1,000 for a device that allows them to change a red light to green right from their drivers seat as if they were law enforcement officers on call. The purpose of the existence of such devices is for emergency access and not for the convenience for someone who wants to get home earlier from work or to dodge traffic. These devices exist and are currently in use by non emergency personnel. Public safety dictates the need to make the use of such devices illegal by persons other than authorized emergency personnel. Such devices flaunt public safety concerns and could cause serious personal injury or death on New York roadways.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act takes effect on the first of November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 1208 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 6, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. JOHNSON -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Transportation AN ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to prohibiting the use of any device which affects the operation of a traffic-control signal THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section 397-c to read as follows: S 397-C. INTERFERENCE WITH A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL. 1. NO PERSON SHALL OPERATE ANY MOTOR VEHICLE, EXCEPT AN AUTHORIZED EMERGENCY VEHICLE OR AUTHORIZED PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION VEHICLE, WHICH HE OR SHE KNOWS IS EQUIPPED WITH A DEVICE CAPABLE OF AFFECTING THE OPERATION OF ANY TRAFF- IC-CONTROL SIGNAL. THE PRESENCE IN A MOTOR VEHICLE OF SUCH A DEVICE CONNECTED TO A POWER SOURCE AND IN AN OPERABLE CONDITION IS PRESUMPTIVE EVIDENCE OF THE OPERATOR'S KNOWLEDGE OF THE DEVICE. SUCH PRESUMPTION SHALL BE REBUTTED BY ANY CREDITABLE EVIDENCE WHICH TENDS TO SHOW THAT THE OPERATOR OF THE MOTOR VEHICLE WAS NOT AWARE OF THE PRESENCE OF SUCH DEVICE. 2. THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT APPLY TO ANY PERSON USING SUCH A DEVICE WHILE ENGAGED IN THE AUTHORIZED MAINTENANCE OR REPAIR OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL. 3. A VIOLATION OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION SHALL CONSTITUTE A TRAFFIC INFRACTION PUNISHABLE BY A FINE OF NOT LESS THAN ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS NOR MORE THAN THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS. 4. A VIOLATION OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION WHILE USING SUCH A DEVICE TO AFFECT THE OPERATION OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL SHALL CONSTI- TUTE A CLASS A MISDEMEANOR. 5. A VIOLATION OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION WHILE USING SUCH A DEVICE TO AFFECT THE OPERATION OF A TRAFFIC-CONTROL SIGNAL AND SUCH USEEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD04455-01-1 S. 1208 2
CAUSES PERSONAL INJURY OR DEATH AS A RESULT OF ITS EFFECT ON A TRAFFIC- CONTROL SIGNAL SHALL CONSTITUTE A CLASS E FELONY. S 2. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed- ing the date on which it shall have become a law.